Arrests made in Newsoms marijuana grow operationPublished 10:58am Wednesday, July 17, 2013
NEWSOMS—Two arrests were made Wednesdsay morning in connection with a May 28 seizure of 99 marijuana plants found in Newsoms.
Kyle Thorpe, 27, and Joel Hedgepeth, 28, were arrested after search warrants for documents related to the marijuana grow operation were issued. An illegal liquor still was also seized during the search. Warrants were issued following an indictment from the grand jury on July 15.
Thorpe was arrested at 34000 Monroe Street, where the two reside, while Hedgepeth was stopped on the road a short distance from it, spokesman Major Gene Drewery said.
Thorpe is charged with two counts of selling and distributing marijuana, conspiring to selling and distributing marijuana, selling drugs within 1,000 feet of a school, possessing a gun with over one pound of marijuana and possessing a distilling apparatus without a license. Hedgepeth is charged with four counts of selling and distributing marijuana, conspiring to sell and distribute marijuana, selling drugs within 1,000 feet of a school and possessing a distilling apparatus without a license.
Both are incarcerated at the Southampton County Jail with no bond. They will be arraigned in Southampton County Circuit Court on July 18.
On May 28, a warrant was served at a Newsoms residence in the 25000 block of Greenbriar Drive, which Thorpe’s father owns, for marijuana paraphernalia including potted plants. The estimated street value of the items was $297,000.
The investigation got started back in May, when the sheriff’s office received tips and used that information to make some buys with a confidential source, Drewery said.